She sits on a bench at the party. She’s been dressed for the holidays in a brand new outfit. She didn’t want the outfit
and protested loudly, but she had to put it on anyway. Watching happy families go by only added to her misery. In a
month she will have been in foster care for over five years. At sixteen her prospects of adoption were fading as each
day fell from the calendar. She had built a tough shell and resigned herself to the fact that she wasn’t wanted. Her
foster family was kind, but she wanted a permanent family. A place to call her own. Looking across the room at her
foster mom she musters a smile, but really, she just wants to disappear.
Sound like a great fictional story? Sadly, it’s not. For this young lady and thousands more like her the thought of a
loving family is just a dream. Right now, in Virginia, my home state, there are approximately 1,500 children in
foster care waiting for a mama to tell them stories, a daddy to tuck them in at night, and the permanence of a
place to call home.
Foster adoption is available in every state and an option you should consider, especially since it’s a nearly free
adoption option. In most states foster adoption costs little to no money, financial assistance is sometimes
available post adoption for ongoing care. Health insurance is also available in some states until the child is 18
There is also the fact that you are breaking a cycle. Children who age out don’t have good statistics. One in
four will have involvement in the justice system. One in five will be homeless. Nearly half will drop out of
These children feel alone, abandoned, and scared. Family means everything to these kids. It is their past, present,
and future rolled into one. When we took a leap of faith and brought our first child home from a foster care adoption
eight years ago, we had no idea what a magnificent journey we would be privileged to witness. From abuse and
neglect, to a thriving child with a future that is as bright as his blue eyes.
That sixteen year old has a bright future now too. A family engaged her at the party and fell in love with her spirit.
This year she celebrates her first Christmas with her mom and dad. Her first stocking will be hung, her first family
Christmas cards go out in a few weeks. She’s home.
Adopt from foster care. Be someone’s past, present, and future.